Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God. 3 John 11
Throughout every store there are thousands of products. Some of those products are the real thing, while others are imitations of the real thing.
Often the imitation looks like the real thing but is not. It is often made of inferior quality and will break down faster or not perform as well. Most people are satisfied with an imitation because they do not want to pay the price for the real.
John tells the reader to not imitate evil, but to imitate good. All good is from God and all evil is not from God.
The world is constantly promoting things that are evil and against God as good. Claims are made that doing, watching, speaking or participating in evil will make one happy and fulfilled.
Throughout the church many have been deceived into believing the lies and deception of the world. They have chosen to grab on to the imitation of life and imitate what is evil, rather than that which is good and of God. This can be seen in lifestyles, what a person watches, listens to and what a person does.
Things the bible directly calls a sin, some churches state that God accepts.
Every believer, who is sincere about following Jesus, will turn away from all sin and refuse to imitate the world and its ways. He will focus on imitating Christ and what is good and true. He will not be swayed, persuaded or deceived into imitating the evil of this fallen and depraved world, because he has seen and knows God and His word.
You will imitate what you are following. The world will work hard to get you to follow its evil ways and imitate them. Do not allow yourself to be deceived into imitating its fallen, deceptive and sinful ways that lead to death.
Seek to know Jesus and God’s word more and more all the time. As you get to know Jesus and God’s word more, you will know the truth and the real thing. God will show you what is good and how to live a holy and righteous life before Him and man.
What are you imitating today?
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will imitate the life of Jesus; that God will strengthen you to turn from all evil; that you will follow the good God has set before you; and that you will be a witness of Jesus for the world to see.
Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves. 1 Peter 2:16
Freedom is the rally cry for many people around the world. People love to be free and be able to do what they want. In the mindset of the majority of people, freedom is the ability to do what one wants, when he wants and how he wants with no restrictions.
While this sounds good, it ultimately breaks down to chaos and death in the end. The world promotes and believes in absolute freedom for self.
After Peter reminds the people that they are God’s chosen people, he encourages them to live as free people, but not to cover up evil.
When Jesus died upon the cross and rose again, He did all of that in order to bring freedom from sin and its judgment to all people. With this freedom from sin, it gave believers the ability to freely live life.
There are many in the church who have taken this freedom too far. Instead of being free to live for God, they continue to live in sin, while believing they are saved in Jesus. They cover-up their sinful habits claiming that Jesus forgives them and set them free.
Salvation is Jesus is not freedom to continue to live in sin, but freedom to live for God. It is freedom to do what God desires without judgment from past wrongs.
Any believer who chooses to focus on living for God, will be so busy living for God, that he will not have time to focus on doing anything that is sinful. Life lived serving God is more rewarding and fulfilling than living as the world does in sin, that only brings about disappointment and death.
As a believer God has set you free from the bondage and judgment of sin, so that you may truly live. Do not allow yourself to go back into bondage of living in sin but live for God. Dedicate your whole life to living for God, rather than self and sin.
Seek God and His word to know how He wants you to live your life. Learn to live as Jesus lived, freely serving God with all of His heart, soul, mind and strength.
You are free to live, but do not use that freedom to sin against a holy God.
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will freely live for God; that God will strengthen you to live according to His ways; that God will break the bondage to sinful acts; and that the world will see you living for God.
But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Hebrews 5:14
Newborn babies start out life drinking milk for food to nourish their bodies. As they grow older, they learn to eat more solid food, little by little, until fully mature.
In the same way, people are to grow in many different areas of their lives. However, many like to stay immature or very simple in certain areas of their life. They do not want to grow up and go through the challenges of training themselves to be more mature.
The author of Hebrews had just rebuked the readers for still needing milk or simple teachings about God. He tells them that solid food or teachings is for the mature that have trained themselves to distinguish good and evil.
Just as many in the world like to remain immature, there are many in the church that live the same way. They believe in Jesus and are saved, but that is all there is to their life and walk with God. Holding onto salvation and God’s love is all they desire, rather than growing in the Lord and becoming mature.
When they read the bible, they only read the major highlight adventure stories, ignoring the rest of scripture. They get offended when someone talks about holiness and righteousness.
People who are living in this way are often unable to realize what is sinful or evil, because they have chosen to not grow and learn more about what it means to be righteous and holy before God and man.
True believers will be like a child and work to grow and mature in the Lord. He will devour all of God’s word and train himself to know good from evil, to be holy before God and man as Jesus is.
No matter how long or short of time you have been a believer, there is always room for growth in His word. There is always more to learn about knowing what is good and what is evil and how to live for God in every area of your life.
In order to keep growing you need to get into the solid food of God’s word, not just simple stories. Do not stunt your growth in the Lord, but eat a healthy diet of all His word, and work at training yourself to live as Jesus lived.
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will know all of God’s word for your life; that you will train yourself to live like Jesus; that you will be ready for the solid food in God’s word; and that you will know the differences between good and evil.